Google may be planning to release Android Nougat update for Huawei Nexus 6P and LG Nexus 5X on August 22, as per a latest report. This may hint about Android Nougat update possible roll-out on the same day by Google to Nexus devices in other regions.
Now in this article we will let you know about the new features and changes that Android Nougat brings over Android Marshmallow.
Android Nougat vs Android Marshmallow New Features
Hands-on Video Demo of new features & changes
Android Nougat brings support for displaying more than one app at the same time. On handheld devices, two apps can run side-by-side or one-above-the-other in split-screen mode. On TV devices, apps can use picture-in-picture mode to continue video playback while users are interacting with another app.
- Handheld devices running Android N offer split-screen mode. In this mode, the system fills the screen with two apps, showing them either side-by-side or one-above-the-other. The user can drag the dividing line separating the two to make one app larger and the other smaller.
- On Nexus Player running Android N, apps can put themselves in picture-in-picture mode, allowing them to continue showing content while the user browses or interacts with other apps.
- Manufacturers of larger devices can choose to enable freeform mode, in which the user can freely resize each activity. If the manufacturer enables this feature, the device offers freeform mode in addition to split-screen mode.
Read our tutorial to know how to activate and use Multi-Windows feature.
- Android Nougat enables Direct Reply feature in notifications.
- Users can quickly respond to text messages or update task lists directly within the notification interface. On a smartphone, the inline reply action appears as an additional button attached to the notification.
- When a user replies via keyboard, the system attaches the text response to the intent you had specified for the notification action and sends the intent to your handheld app.
- Android N provides developers with a new way to represent a queue of notifications: bundled notifications. This is similar to the Notification Stacks feature in Android Wear.
- For example, if your app creates notifications for received messages, when more than one message is received, bundle the notifications together as a single group.
- Notification controls: When a notification pops up, just press and hold to toggle the settings. For instance, you can silence future alerts from an app in the notification itself.
Mobile Data Saver & Improved Doze:
- With Android Nougat, users can enable Data Saver on a device-wide basis in order to use less Mobile data, whether roaming, near the end of the billing cycle, or on a small prepaid data pack.
- When a user enables Data Saver in Settings and the device is on a metered network, the system blocks background data usage and signals apps to use less data in the foreground wherever possible.
- Users can whitelist specific apps to allow background metered data usage even when Data Saver is turned on.
- Doze: Doze is now dozier, with your device going into lower power usage when you’re on the move. That means your Android device will conserve battery even when it’s jostling around in your pocket.
In-Built DPI Settings & Wallpaper:
- Android Nougat brings in-built DPI settings that allows one to scale up or down the display and other items on it based on the settings you choose.
- Lockscreen wallpaper: You can now have different wallpapers on your device’s homescreen and lockscreen.
- You can set Night Mode right from Notification Center where it can be added as a quick-action icon
- Toggling it on makes changes in color temp and brightness making device display more suitable for Night time reading
- Not only Android Nougat brings split-screen multitasking, it also makes the multitasking button even smarter.
- Now with Android N, when you double tap the home button, it will now switch back to the previous app that you were using. While multiple taps will take you to the apps in the order they were opened.
The built-In File Manager has been improved:
- With Android N,Google has improved the File manager app. The app was first made available in Android Marshmallow but that was not powerful & let you only copy files. But now with Android N, it lets you rename, copy,create new folder etc.
Call blocking & Do Not disturb:
- The do not disturb mode was already available in Android Marshmallow. But with Android N, the alarms can override DND. Along with deeper DND integration , there is a new feature called call blocking which is not new but now in Android N, it has system level call blocking feature.
Emergency contact on Home screen:
- With Android N, Google has made it’s OS more feature rich. Now the company has introduced a new feature that lets you add any custom number to your home screen which is quite helpful in emergency cases.
No More ‘Optimize Apps’ :
- Optimize apps was a task you have to do when you are updating your Android OS version. It was introduced with Android Kitkat. But now with Android N, the company has skipped the process of ‘Optimizing Apps’ and this results in faster update experience.
Settings & Quick settings revamp:
- Android Nougat Settings page a revamped new look
- Customizable Quick Settings: Rearrange your Quick Setting tiles so you can get to what you want faster.
- Quick Settings bar: Quick Settings has been redesigned so you can get faster access to top Quick Settings tiles directly in the notification shade.
- Improved Settings navigation: Find the right setting faster with an updated navigation menu in Settings.
- Android Nougat brings many Keyboard themes that allows one to change the look of the keyboard on Android Nougat
- Clear all Button in Recent apps list, though you need to scroll all the way to top to access it
A new look for App folders:
- App Folders on Android Nougat have a brand new look as can be seen in screenshot above
Emoji Unicode 9 support:
- Android Nougat brings a new emoji design for people emoji that moves away from generic look in favor of a more human-looking design.
- The update also introduces support for skin tone variations and Unicode 9 glyphs, like the bacon, selfie and face palm.
Android Instant Apps (For devs):
- Android Instant Apps as part of our effort to evolve the way we think about apps. Whether someone discovers your app from search, social media, messaging or other deep links, they’ll be able to experience a fast and powerful native Android app without needing to stop and install your app first or reauthenticate. Best of all, Android Instant Apps is compatible with all Android devices running Jellybean or higher (4.1+) with Google Play services. Android Instant Apps functionality is an upgrade to your existing Android app, not a new, separate app; you can sign-up to request early access to the documentation.
System Updates in Background:
- Android N also adds some important new features to help keep users safer and more secure. Inspired by how Chromebooks apply updates, we’re introducing seamless updates, so that new Android devices built on N can install system updates in the background.
- This means that the next time a user powers up their device, new devices can automatically and seamlessly switch into the new updated system image.
Camera Apps changes:
- The native camera app has seen many UI tweaks and some animations have also changed. As you can see in the screenshot above you can now set what the volume key does.
- Similarly there are changes in how the toggles appear.
Apps have their Installation source info:
- If you go to settings and check any of the apps, you will get information about its installation source (whether store or else) at the bottom. Check the screenshot above.
From the official Changelog:
- JIT compiler: The new JIT compiler improves runtime device performance, reduces the amount of storage space required for apps, and makes app and system updates much faster.
- VR mode: With VR mode, Android Nougat is ready to transport you to new worlds. Coming soon with Daydream and Daydream-ready phones.
- Vulkan™ API: Vulkan API is a real game changer with high-performance 3D graphics. See apps leap to life with sharper graphics and eye candy effects.
- Direct boot: When restarting your device, Direct Boot helps it start up faster, and ensures that important communications still run. So before you even put in your password, you’ll still get that important text message and hear your alarm clock ring.
- File-based encryption: Building on top of our security platform, Android Nougat introduces file-based encryption. By encrypting at the file level instead of the block level, Android can better isolate and protect files for individual users on your device.
- Scoped folder access: Apps can request access to specific folders that you can allow or deny access to (just like app runtime permissions). This is a reduced-scope version of the Storage permission for Apps that only need access to certain folders. It can also allow Apps to request direct access to removable media (on devices with that hardware).
- Trusted face: Trusted face, a part of Smart Lock, makes unlocking even easier thanks to a new face recognizer. The new recognizer is less sensitive to conditions like lighting, facial decorations (eyewear, facial hair, etc.), and how you hold your phone. Available on select devices.
- Improved system backup coverage: More device settings are covered by Android Backup, including accessibility settings, run-time permissions for apps, Wi-Fi hotspot settings and Wi-Fi network restrictions.
- Multi-locale support: Select multiple locales in Settings to tailor experiences for you, such as showing search results in multiple languages and not offering to translate webpages in a language you already know.
- New languages supported: Coupled with allowing you to select multiple languages preferences, Android Nougat allows you to select from 100 new languages and 25 locales for commonly used languages such as English, Spanish, French, and Arabic. This enables Apps to better support and understanding your language preferences even if your devices lacks official support for it.
- New language preferences: Sort your language preferences so that apps can pick the right keyboard & text for you.
- Accessibility settings in setup: It’s easier than ever before for you to discover and configure accessibility features on your new device. Set magnification gesture, font size, display size, and TalkBack right out of the box.
- Display size: Not only can you change the size of the text on your device, but the size of all the display elements like icons and images.
- Accessibility mono output: Accessibility mono output assists users with hearing loss in one ear by combining stereo left and right channel output to a single mono stream.
- Variable text to speech speed: Variable text to speech speed increases productivity of text to speech users by allowing setting wider range for speech speed and pitches.
- Work mode: Work mode allows you to turn on and off your device’s work apps and notifications for a better work, life balance.